By Randy Cohen
The list is: Drink antifreeze; eat a lot of loquat seeds; swallow an 18 inch stick; walk in front of a tour bus. List of what?
by noon ET Thursday to e-mail your answer (NewsQuiz@slate.com).
Responses to Tuesday's question (No. 31)--"$353":
$353. What is the significance of this sum?
"The service charge for a counter deposit at the soon-to-be-formed FirstCitiTravelersNationsBankOneAmerica."--Dan Kois (Gloria Howard was similarly skeptical of the economies of scale.)
"Wow. This is weird. $353 is the exact amount you'd have to pay me to sit through five minutes of My Giant."--Jon Hotchkiss
"Amount Randy paid me for News Quiz No. 30. How much did all of you get?"--Patty Marx
"Average amount the American family spends annually on ferret diapers, and boy, was I careful in spelling the word 'annually.' "--Bill Franzen
"Average tax an upper-income Dick Armey contributor would pay under Armey's flat tax proposal."--Gary Frazier
"I was audited. They asked me. I didn't know then. I don't know now."--Alfa-Betty Olsen (similar angle but with a frightening detour past the Pleasure Chest, Steve Radlauer)
"Record price paid for a Toblerone from a hotel room honor bar by a populist documentary filmmaker."--Chris Kelly
Click for more responses.
While not the answer I was seeking, $353 will buy you about 200 blades for the forthcoming Gillette Mach 3 razor, the triple-bladed successor to the company's twin-blade Sensor razor. Pay $1.70 for a razor blade? Yes--for a razor blade that travels three times the speed of sound! Maybe not that fast. But it is a razor blade with 35 patents, five years of R & D at a cost of $375 million, and a very cool name. The hardest part? It had to have been shouting down a lot of hotheads with their crazy scheme for some kind of futuristic four-blade razor.
John Darman, VP for business management for male shaving, says, "Mach 3 establishes an entirely new performance zone and makes all previous products seem old."
I've never felt more stubbly.
As Larry Amaros and several others knew (take my word for it, or click), $353 is the amount Al and Tipper Gore gave to charity last year, less than two-tenths of 1 percent of their $197,729 income.
"We do it with grace, with taste, with dignity."--Sheila Nevins, senior VP of HBO's documentary division, producers of Real Sex 19 and Shock Video 2.
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